Has Any One Bought Or Seen The Ace Of Cakes Book Yet?

Decorating By andpotts Updated 9 Nov 2009 , 5:53pm by craftbarn

andpotts Posted 25 Oct 2009 , 10:59pm
post #1 of 26

I see that it's been released on Amazon, but I was wondering if anyone has seen or read it yet, is it worth buying?

If I were in the states I would just run out and take a look for myself, alas I am limited to Amazon and the opinions of fellow cakers, so reviews please!!

25 replies
andpotts Posted 27 Oct 2009 , 2:15am
post #2 of 26

Darn I was hoping someone had it already, it's just sitting in my Amazon cart waiting for me to make a decision icon_smile.gif

letsgetcaking Posted 27 Oct 2009 , 12:54pm
post #3 of 26

I haven't seen the book, but I'm always on the site goodreads.com. Here is a link to a fairly thorough review:

http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/6474838-ace-of-cakes-the-book

Here's the review in case the link doesn't work. I couldn't figure out how to link directly to that specific review.

Quote:
Quote:

10/24/09 Renee Bush:

Read in October, 2009
I knew when I ordered this book that it is NOT a cookbook, or how-to book, though there are plenty of fun tips included!

This review could get bogged down in details, because there was not a page of this book on which I did not find something I absolutely loved--the tips, the photos, the fun facts. The best word for this one is "lush"--the incredible photos of cakes which are eye-candy masterpieces; the photos of people to whom viewers feel a connection; the details of what...more I knew when I ordered this book that it is NOT a cookbook, or how-to book, though there are plenty of fun tips included!

This review could get bogged down in details, because there was not a page of this book on which I did not find something I absolutely loved--the tips, the photos, the fun facts. The best word for this one is "lush"--the incredible photos of cakes which are eye-candy masterpieces; the photos of people to whom viewers feel a connection; the details of what it is "really like" to work at Charm City cakes... the list goes on.

You have to LOVE the show to LOVE this book--but, isn't that obvious? If someone buys this book expecting it to detail for them how to start their own Charm City--forget it; but even the "show-uninitiated" could get pulled in by simply thumbing through this book. Show-LOVERS, such as myself, will only love the show all the more, as a result of reading ACE OF CAKES.

Some favorite bits: Mary Alice explaining herself explaining the no-visitors policy (I would need to keep Valium handy!); any one of the decorators telling his/her own story; anything, and everything, DUFF.

Duff says he does not consider himself particularly gifted. Where he errs in that statement is in the lack of detail. While he may not consider himself a gifted cake-decorator (I know; none of us who love him can understand THAT), his real gift, to my mind, is his incredible joie de vivre. I guess he must have a bad day and be a grouch sometimes; but it is hard to picture it. Also, my favorite episodes are the ones in which he donates an incredible cake to an important cause. What a large heart this "hairy baker" (An MA quote) has!!!

I cannot imagine this one getting fewer than five stars in a review; but then, I think ACE OF CAKES is one of the best things on television. The winning ingredients are the people, then the cakes.


CakeSnubbery Posted 27 Oct 2009 , 1:06pm
post #4 of 26

I had it in my hand to buy at the bookstore until I saw the $35 price tag. It's definitely stuffed with info and pictures, and probably worth the money, but that was a little too steep for me at the moment.

Edited to add: The book is much bigger than I expected, and there is literally no space wasted, every page is covered with pictures, stories, etc. It is probably worth every penny of that $35. But like the review says, it's not a "cake book" and you'd have to love the show to love the book. Hope that helps!

cylstrial Posted 27 Oct 2009 , 1:43pm
post #5 of 26

I forgot that it came out. I'll have to run over to Borders and check it out today.

Charmed Posted 27 Oct 2009 , 9:37pm
post #6 of 26

I just got the book from our library and I am kind of disappointed. I was so excited about the book and I thought it would be about cakes and it is not...the book is about the charm city cakes and how it started and mostly biography of all the staff. icon_cry.gif

cylstrial Posted 27 Oct 2009 , 10:16pm
post #7 of 26

Really? That's surprising to me as well Charmed.

Rylan Posted 27 Oct 2009 , 10:31pm
post #8 of 26

I'd love to know more about Geoff.

tenleysmommy Posted 27 Oct 2009 , 10:48pm
post #9 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rylan

I'd love to know more about Geoff.




icon_lol.gif Not the best looking fella,but love his dry sense of humor!

jenncowin Posted 27 Oct 2009 , 10:58pm
post #10 of 26

I have it reserved at my local library, but haven't gotten it yet. Can't wait to look at it to see if I want to go buy it.

Kayakado Posted 28 Oct 2009 , 5:30pm
post #11 of 26

I had it on preorder with my bookstore and got it last week. I left iot at work over the weekend to keep it out of temptation's way ( I had homework).

It is a good book for fans of the people on show, but not for the cakes. Each Charm City person has a few pages of bio and then a cake that they made specially for the book. This book also gives info about all the Food Network people, cameramen, sound people - basically everyone involved making the show, the history of the Goldman family and starting the bakery.

There is a centerfold claiming to depict every cake made over the last seven years. It probably does, but the pics are smaller than postage stamps. Too small for magnifying them into to something recognizable.

Then there is an episode by episode synopsis of the show from start to finish.

I was hoping for a few recipes and some large cake pics with real detail.

I was disappointed to say the least, but real fans may be totally elated.

sweetpea1972 Posted 28 Oct 2009 , 5:35pm
post #12 of 26

I just got mine last night at their book signing! I got to meet and get all of their autographs (except Ben and Adam). So cool! I felt like I was 8 years old and starstruck! They were all so nice and exactly the way they seem on TV

I just started flipping through it. They say up front that it is not a cookbook. The pictures are great! Some of the information I've seen before (on other episodes or Chefography) but I still love having it since he's a hometown guy!

enchantedcreations Posted 28 Oct 2009 , 5:51pm
post #13 of 26

Okay, I have a question... I saw an episode the other night and they were filming the the camera crew taking shots of them creating all these cakes for the book. This is the first year I've been watching Duff, so my question is this; all those cakes were being made on fake boards, etc. But were they re-created or duplicates of already produced "real" cakes? I was confussed, as I thought "how do they know they will really work in the real world?" It was turning me off and I didn't think I would want to buy the book if they were just creating "master pieces" for a book to be published. Cany anyone clarify? Thank you.

VinceLupo Posted 7 Nov 2009 , 11:25am
post #14 of 26

I was one of the photographers on the Ace Of Cakes book project (the bald guy with glasses in the 'Book of Cakes' episode, and on page 84 of the book). If you want to see more photos of the project that DIDN'T make it into the book, check out my flickr link: http://www.flickr.com/groups/duffjpegs/

It was a great project (we shot it in Feb-Mar 200icon_cool.gif, and everyone was wonderful to work with. Overall I'm pleased with the results, though the 'better' photos taken by the three photographers on the project (me, Justin and Adrienne) seem to get obscured by the other shots taken with people's cell phone cameras, etc....but that might just be the photographer in me talking. As far as recipes go, I did shots of Adam making a butter cream, and thought that recipe was going to be in there (it's only one recipe, I know), but you can see those shots on the flickr site.

As far as the cakes being re-creations of existing cakes, the only one that I can speak about is the one that Duff made (the three layered asymmetrical cake). That's one that has been a staple for him over the years, so in a sense that's a re-creation of a real cake. But all the other ones were only made for the book itself, and done in styrofoam. These needed to hold up for photography only, so no point in making them out of actual cake. There is one actual cake that Duff made for me to photograph, the slice of which can be found on page 107 of the book. Nice thing was that I got to take that cake home!

Image

andpotts Posted 7 Nov 2009 , 12:12pm
post #15 of 26

How incredibly cool of you to join in and post Vince! Your pictures are beautiful and my copy of the book should arrive in the mail soon. Now here is my burning question since I have you, lol, how was the cake? What flavor was it was it, how was the filling, anything you can remember to share? Forgive me I am a cake nerd to the 10th degree and I have waited forever to hear from someone who has had a Charm City cake icon_smile.gif Thanks for sharing all of the outtakes too, that's just so cool! Andrea

VinceLupo Posted 7 Nov 2009 , 1:05pm
post #16 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by andpotts

How incredibly cool of you to join in and post Vince! Your pictures are beautiful and my copy of the book should arrive in the mail soon. Now here is my burning question since I have you, lol, how was the cake? What flavor was it was it, how was the filling, anything you can remember to share? Forgive me I am a cake nerd to the 10th degree and I have waited forever to hear from someone who has had a Charm City cake icon_smile.gif Thanks for sharing all of the outtakes too, that's just so cool! Andrea




Hi Andrea - The cake was perfectly fine and tasty - not earth shattering, omigod this is the best cake I've ever had in my life, but very very good. The filling was a 'strawberry shortcake' if I remember correctly. Duff had Adam specifically make this 6" cake for me, and then Sofia did a basic decoration with blue and purple fondant.

Here is a shot of the cake...

Image

Of course, at the time their cakes started at $500. So of course I was eager to say to my wife: "Here honey, have a $125 slice of cake!".

I can't stress enough how nice they are to work with - they are truly a cohesive and talented team, and I am very thankful to have had the opportunity to be part of this unique project.

andpotts Posted 8 Nov 2009 , 7:00am
post #17 of 26

So very neat thanks for sharing your cake review. I hope others take another peek at this thread and see that you popped in!

ibmoser Posted 8 Nov 2009 , 4:44pm
post #18 of 26

Vince - what fantastic photos! Thanks so much for sharing - you have a great eye thumbs_up.gif

sweetjan Posted 8 Nov 2009 , 5:07pm
post #19 of 26

Can't wait, thanks for sharing, and thanks for dropping in, Vince! You're a talent, yourself!!
Anything in the book about Ben? I just love him........ icon_biggrin.gif

fiddlesticks Posted 8 Nov 2009 , 5:19pm
post #20 of 26

My Barnes and Noble carries the book! I flipped through it but didnt buy it, it looks interesting but for sure its about Charm City and not how to do cakes etc! Doesent mean thats bad just depends on what you were expecting !

bobwonderbuns Posted 8 Nov 2009 , 5:29pm
post #21 of 26

I want one but I haven't seen the book yet. I know on Amazon it got great reviews.

VinceLupo Posted 9 Nov 2009 , 1:17am
post #22 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by sweetjan

Anything in the book about Ben? I just love him........ icon_biggrin.gif




Every decorator has a 'chapter' - Ben's is on pages 118-122, and there's some biographical stuff, as well as shots of his 'grill' cake and another cake that he did.

He's a great guy and I always enjoy seeing him when I go to the bakery.

Image

bobwonderbuns Posted 9 Nov 2009 , 1:20am
post #23 of 26

Vince can you please make those pix smaller, they take up the entire screen and I can't read what anyone is saying! icon_rolleyes.gif

YorkieMaMa Posted 9 Nov 2009 , 1:39am
post #24 of 26

I saw it at Barnes and Noble and I was not impressed. It is all biography about the individual persons on the show and how things got started. Not very many cake photos. I like looking at pcitures of cakes, so it was not a book I would buy.

letsgetcaking Posted 9 Nov 2009 , 1:43am
post #25 of 26

Thanks for sharing your pics, Vince! They're all great! I love the photo of the slice of cake. Looks yummy! It's nice to get an idea of how thick the fondant and buttercream should be, too. icon_smile.gif

craftbarn Posted 9 Nov 2009 , 5:53pm
post #26 of 26

I am really excited. Duff is coming to my area tonight and I have his book and the wristband to get it signed. I think you have to be more of an architect for some of his work.

It will be interesting to read about each of the decorators and to see pictured os his work. I watch his program and am amazed at how his decorators (and Duff of course) can make some of the designs.

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